Nine months ago we downsized our house for one reason. The reason was because God told us to sell and out of obedience we decided to sell our house without any knowledge as to where He would be leading us. Logically, it made sense since our oldest child was going off to college so we did not really need as large of a house. Unbeknownst to us, I would be going into exile from employment just a couple weeks later. God knew this was happening and staying in our house would have been a complete financial ruin.
Fortunately, we obeyed and put our house on the market. It was a really hot real estate market and at the price point we were looking at, houses would only last 2-3 days at the most. It was not uncommon to have 10-15 people bidding on a house on the first weekend it went on the market. When God told my wife to look at a house, that was even below the price range we thought we were looking for, she obeyed. It was an amazing house, in the perfect location. It was newly renovated, so the inside was beautiful. The back yard even had four large (10×12 feet) in ground planter beds. When we looked at the house, all I saw were four big boxes with dirt. I didn’t pay much attention to is, as I am not a farmer. My grandfather had a garden, but I have never had the interest.
We put our offer on the house the first day it went on the market. We loved the house. Sixteen other families also loved the house and also put offers down. We were not the highest offer. Not only were there higher offers, there were higher cash offers. I was unfamiliar with the benefit of having a cash offer on the table. It is because there are no lending institutions getting involved. It speeds up the process and makes it infinitely simpler for the seller.
We got a call on the Saturday, three days after we put our offer on the table. Our agent was crying. We figured God didn’t want us to have the house so began to console our agent. When she interrupted and said, “You got the house! I am crying because I am so happy for you.” We were shocked. Seventeen offers and not the highest offer, yet, God gave us favor and moved the hearts of the sellers to sell the house to us. We felt so loved by Papa God!
When we finally moved in we walked out back and the four planter boxes were full of fruits and vegetables. The sellers had planted, knowing they would not get the experience the full harvest of their labors. Last summer we had more tomatoes, peppers, onions, zucchini, watermelon and cantaloupe than we could eat. I was reminded of Paul’s message to the church at Corinth in 1 Corinthians 3:67,
“I planted the seed and Apollos watered it. But God is the one who made the seed grow. So the one who plants is not important, and the one who waters is not important. Only God is important, because he is the one who makes things grow.”
We didn’t plant the garden or water it for the first three months of growing. However, we got to harvest all of the fruit. God, of course, made it grow. It was yes another blessing we received from being obedient to His voice. There was one plant that grew, but bore no fruit. The strawberry plants came up in due time, but did not grow any fruit. We had 8-10 plants and I would check them all summer, as we all love strawberries. Nothing. When the growing season was over, I cleaned out the dead plants. I left the strawberry plants as they were still green and a nice ground covering. From late summer through early spring, the strawberry plants multiplied. They also survived a really cold winter, for Texas that is, which reached below freezing on a number of occasions. The strawberry plants didn’t mind. Since I am not a farmer, I had no idea strawberry plants can survive the cold. They survived, thrived and multiplied. Now the whole 10×12 planter box is full of strawberry plants.
Fast forward nine months and today, I harvested a whole bucket of strawberries to make a strawberry syrup for french toast. I know my exile from employment is coming to an end. It is a new season and I believe the strawberry plants are a prophetic sign from God that my obedience and faith in Him is being rewarded. Not only will He multiply the job, I believe it will bear much fruit! He is just that good of a Father to want to give us great rewards. We are entering a new season, one with growth, multiplication and fruit. Believe it for yourself, claim the testimonies over your lives and say, “do it again Lord, do it again.” Spring is here.